Wii U watershed explained

Wii U adult content restrictions are due to German law, says Nintendo

Nintendo says that German regulations are the reason as to why Wii U users are restricted to buying mature content between 11pm and 3am from the eStore.

If you're a recent Wii U owner who is shocked and appalled you're unable to buy items with mature-rated content in them from the eStore whenever you want, blame Germany. According to Nintendo, the fact that Wii U users are restricted from buying mature-rated content between the hours of 11pm and 3am is down to German regulations governing adult entertainment.

A statement sent to T3 by Nintendo explained their position; because Nintendo of Europe is based in Germany it has to abide by that country''s regulations.

"At Nintendo we always aim to provide a safe gaming experience for fans of all ages and ensure that we comply with applicable legal age restriction requirements across Europe," the statement said. "Legal age restriction requirements vary across a number of European countries. Since Nintendo of Europe is based in Germany, Nintendo eShop is complying with German youth protection regulation which therefore applies to all our European markets. Under German law, content rated 18+ must be made available only at night."

Nintendo hasn't announced - or even hinted at - any plans to make mature-rated content more readily available on a country-to-country basis. So far, the console has sold around 40,000 units in the UK, so that's presumably 40,000 people who'll have to stay up past their bedtime if they want to download any mature-rated content.